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Tuesday, May 26, 2015
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RI Archives: Rural Road Trips

View past Excursions articles.

View all past Rural Road Trip articles.

Eastover Estate and Retreat

Travel Resources

Amtrak Empire Service between Albany, Hudson or Rhinecliff, NY and Penn Station, NYC.

Amtrak Lake Shore Limited between Pittsfield and South Station, Boston.

Bard Bus and Shuttle  On select summer weekends, Bard offers round-trip bus service from Manhattan’s Lincoln Center directly to the Fisher Center, exclusively for performance ticket holders: $30 round-trip. Reservations are required. Box dinners can be ordered in advance for $10. Bard also offers shuttle service from and to the Poughkeepsie Metro-North train station for select performances: $10 each way.

Mega-bus between Albany and Ridgewood, N.J. and Penn Station, NYC.

Metro-North Railroad between Wassaic, Dover Plains, or Poughkeepsie, NY and Harlem (125th Street)  or Grand Central Station, NYC.

Peter Pan Bus Lines  Boston/Albany route serving Albany, Great Barrington, *Lee, Lenox, *Pittsfield, Stockbridge, Williamstown, and Boston South Station and Boston Logan Airport  (*greater frequency, better fares). NYC/Williamstown route serving Williamstown, Lee, Stockbridge, Great Barrington, MA, or Canaan, CT and Port Authority Bus Terminal, NYC.

Roosevelt Ride Free Shuttle  Free round-trip shuttle service daily (summer through October) from the Poughkeepsie train station to Hyde Park, Val-Kil, the Vanderbilt Mansion, Top Cottage, and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum so Metro-North train passengers can tour historic sites without a car. For reservations and tour info, call the Wallace Visitor Center: 845-229-5320.

Weather Underground
The radar is especially useful for tracking snow, sleet and thunderstorms.

[See more Excursion articles]

Camp Unleashed: ‘Cause Dogs Get SAD Too

Rural Intelligence: Rural Road Trips: Excursions Image

Tourists take in the sights at Camp Unleashed. All photographs by Trix Rosen

Help your best buddy beat the winter blahs with Camp Unleashed’s Winter-Wonderland Weekend, February 20 -22, a rural retreat for dogs and their owners (or, as the powers that be at Camp Unleashed refer to those who feed, walk, bathe, and take dogs to the vet, “their people”).  Guests, both quadru- and biped, stay at the Inn at Shaker Mill Farm, a former grist mill in the Taconic Range on the western edge of the Berkshire Mountains in Canaan, NY, 135 miles from New York and 140 from Boston.

Everyone knows that dog people are different from other folks but those who live in the country are not nearly the breed apart that city dog people are.  Maybe it’s because the obligations of dog ownership in the city are greater—three long walks a day, no doggie door.  Or maybe it’s because urban dog culture is so rich it’s bound to shape a dog owner’s life. Or maybe it’s because city dogs themselves are different.  Here in the country, we tend to walk alone with our dogs, fielding the inevitable sturm-und-drang of neighborhood canines whose sense of territory we’ve offended. City dogs, by contract, travel in packs.  They often have a circle of friends whose owners time their walks so their dogs can play together.  As for their sense of territory, if they have one at all, it is pretty much confined to their bowls and their beds.

Rural Intelligence Road Trips
Morning hikes: cross-country skis or snowshoes optional.
Annie Brody, founder and director of Camp Unleashed, knows all this. She is a native New Yorker who, after adopting her first dog, moved from the 29th-floor of a Manhattan apartment building to a cottage on a dirt road in northeast Columbia County, NY.  “I witnessed the relaxing effect that living in nature had on both of us,” she says. “So I decided to create a getaway where city dogs could unwind and “unleash” their true canine spirits, together with their human guardians.”

At these retreats, Brody and her team of devoted dog professionals offer lots or nothing to do (and solemnly swear there will be no stupid pet tricks or best-in-show prizes).  Dogs of all ages, puppies to seniors, differently-abled dogs, dogs that are not athletically inclined, and those that are, all enjoy the freedom, fresh air, and each other.  In addition to morning hikes in the snow (cross-country skiing and snowshoeing optional), activities include a tasting of award-winning wines from nearby Furnace Brook Winery at Hilltop Orchards in Richmond, MA,  an afternoon workshop on spinning dog fur into yarn, antiquing for exceptional dog-themed collectibles at Sandy Klempner Antiques, and optional therapeutic massages for people and their pooches.

Let the howling begin.

Camp Unleashed
$599/person and up to two dogs;
20% discount for nonprofits professionals; $25 for the owners of rescued dogs
Includes private room with bath for two nights,
all meals, trail fees and instruction, wine-tasting,
arts- and-crafts workshop. Please reserve by 2/16/09.


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Posted by Marilyn Bethany on 02/11/09 at 07:50 AM • Permalink